Earlier this week I'd ordered some .690 cast lead round balls, 0.020" thick patches, and a few other items, from Track of the Wolf. I'd also ordered a 10 lb. bag each of Lawrence copper plated No. 5 and No. 7.5 birdshot from Rotometals, via their Amazon shop. Both orders came yesterday.
I patterned both sizes of shot at ~15 yards. The birdshot loads were 80 grains of 2Fg Goex and an equivalent volume of shot (i.e., a "square load"). On top of the powder I put a corrugated cardboard wad and a 1/8" thick lubricated felt wad. The shot was secured in place with a second corrugated cardboard wad. The wads were punched out using a 3/4" arch punch that I got from Amazon, which I chucked in my mill, with a piece of wood held in the mill vise under the wad material. I put the mill on a low speed, and the wads were cut out easily. Beats using a hammer!
We used IDPA paper targets for patterning. I put some blue painter's tape in the middle for a well-defined aiming point.
First, the No. 7.5s, used for informal trap shooting:
This load looks like a winner for close range deer hunting. It's accurate enough to 50 yards and even after 11 shots with no wiping, seated easily. In fact, the balls can be started in the muzzle with only thumb pressure.
I noticed that fouling was starting to build up in the breech after about 9 shots. I could've continued shooting after 11 shots if I wiped the bore, but by then it was lunchtime and we called it quits.
One thing that helped make loading easier was that last night I'd measured out all my powder and shot loads, and put them in speed loader tubes from TOTW. Likewise, I'd prelubed my shooting patches, which saved a lot of mess, since Bore Butter gets runny when it's 90 degrees out.
Aside from preparing my powder and shot charges and lubing my patches, I'd prepared a Ziploc bag of cleaning patches by soaking them in water with a little Windex squirted in. I used a few of these after shooting, then completed cleaning once I got home. At home I took advantage of the gun's patent breech and dunked the breech end in a bucket of hot soapy water, so I could pump it through the bore. I then followed up with some dry patches, and then a few with WD40 to make sure that there wasn't any water left inside. Finally, I left the bore with a good coat of Ballistol to prevent rust.
I am really looking forward to carrying the Euroarms Magnum Cape Gun afield this fall.